Tying Up

Tying-Up –ย Management & Prevention


๐Ÿ’ข Tying-Up – Management & Prevention โ‡๏ธ
๐Ÿ”ฌThe term TYING-UP is used to describe a wide variety of muscle disorders that can occur in performance horses.
๐Ÿ“– The scientific name is Rhabdomyolysis, where the ‘myolysis’ part means muscle breakdown.
๐Ÿ”Ž Clinical signs of tying up are varied and depends on the severity of the episode.
๐Ÿ”ป Uncontrolled contraction of muscle groups and reluctance to move are the main signs. The muscles in the hindquarters commonly most affected.
Other signs:
๐Ÿ”ปPain and sensitivity
๐Ÿ”ปIncreased heart & respiratory rate
๐Ÿ”ปProfuse sweating
๐Ÿ”ปTemperature up to 40ยฐC
๐Ÿ”ปGait gradually stiffens/locks
๐Ÿ•˜ A tying-up episode can persist for several hours and in severe cases the horse’s urine turns a dark, red-brown colour which is due to the broken down muscle protein called myoglobin.
๐Ÿ’ข When muscle cells are damaged, they release high amounts of certain enzymes into the blood circulation. They are Creatine Kinase (CK) and Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST) and both show up in high levels on blood testing profile.
โฑ The peak levels for CK occur 4-6 hours after an episode of tying-up.

๐Ÿ”Ž The cause of tying-up centres around muscle management, biochemistry and physiology. It is not known which single mechanism triggers the condition but the combination of many factors are known to contribute to the severity.

โžก๏ธ Types of Tying-Up:
1๏ธโƒฃ) Recurrent Exertional Rhabdomyolysis (RER) โ€“ occurs when calcium is trapped inside the muscle cells preventing them from fully relaxing.
Prolonged partial contraction leads to muscle damage and considerable pain.
2๏ธโƒฃ) Polysaccharide Storage Myopathy (PSSM) โ€“ is the accumulation of glycogen in the muscle tissue, but the structure of the glycogen is not normal, due to a genetics and this is where the issue occurs. When the horse is exercising, it needs to access this glycogen for energy and the abnormal glycogen structure prevents this from happening.

๐Ÿด When looking at equine muscle physiology and more importantly the need for muscles to be worked and fuelled appropriately, asking a horse to perform beyond their fitness level will increase the risk of tying up.
๐ŸŽ Excessive muscle breakdown is a side effect of overtraining an under conditioned muscle. Unrealistic workloads along with electrolyte imbalances (particularly low sodium), vitamin E/selenium deficiencies or a concurrent illness (virus) all can provide triggers for tying-up.
โš–๏ธ The many other possible triggers include:
โž–Calcium : Phosphate ratio imbalance
โž–Hypotension / Nervousness
โž–Inadequate oxygen transport to muscles
โž–Abnormal carbohydrate metabolism
โž–Lactic acid build up
โž–Hormone imbalances
โž–Genetic inheritance
๐ŸŒพ*Oats – There is only anecdotal evidence and no scientific reason/evidence to why oats trigger a tying up episode. It is unclear exactly why, as their nutritional profile is very healthy with 80%-90% digested by the small intestine. This is a huge advantage over other grains, because if too much starch gets into the large intestine, it affects the microbiome environment and surrounding tissue leading to many health issues.

โœ… Limit the risk of tying-up by focusing on good dietary and exercise management.
Keep to a consistent exercise schedule within your horse’s fitness level, building fitness levels up so they are handling the work before increasing the workload.
๐ŸŒฑ The majority of their diet should be based around fibre (pasture or grassy hay) and keep grain intake to a minimal unless an increase in calories is required due to the workload.
๐Ÿ”ธ Provide a quality plant based Omega 3 oil as a healthy cool source of calories, which does not contribute to the lactic acid levels.
๐Ÿ“Š Meeting all essential daily vitamin and mineral requirements including those for electrolytes and antioxidants will also help limit the risk of your horse of tying up.
โœ… Calcium, Phosphate, Magnesium
โœ… Antioxidants – Vitamin E & Selenium
โœ… Electrolytes – Sodium, Potassium & Chloride

โ“Any questions? Please ask in the comments below๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿป

๐Ÿ–ŠWritten by Bryan Meggitt (BMedSc. PGCrtMedSc.)
Manager and Co-founder of CEN – Complete Equine Nutrition
๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ”ฌBryan is a scientist and equine nutrition educator through the nutrition principles of Dr Juliet Getty and Dr Eleanor Kellon.
โค๏ธ๐Ÿด Bryan is passionate about improving equine health through proper natural nutrition according to science.
He believes a horse should be fed according to their natural physiology, to achieve optimum health and enhance performance.
Article Link: https://www.equinefeeds.com.au/tying-up/

๐Ÿ’Ž๐Ÿด CEN Healthy Horse Products:
๐Ÿ”นCEN Oil is a trusted high quality source of Omega 3. The healthy way to a shine, promoting anti-inflammatory conditions and is essential for overall health, particularly for brain, nerve and muscle function, the immune system, coat/skin, joints and hooves.
๐Ÿ”นCEN Complete Formula feed is developed according to Australian conditions and research advances into digestive health and vitamin and mineral absorption. CEN Complete Formula Feed is specifically balanced and provides horses with a healthy palatable feed.
The perfect addition to all equine diets by providing quality high vitamins and minerals, live probiotic and prebiotic for daily digestive health maintenance.
โ€ข Non-Grain Based Cold Pressed Pellet Feed
โ€ข Quality high level chelated vitamin and mineral profile (limiting the need for further supplementation โ€“ just add roughage and salt)
โ€ข Live Probiotic + Prebiotic for optimum digestive health and immune system
โ€ข Safe for horses prone to tying-up, laminitis, or โ€œheat fizzโ€ from high grain diet
โ€ข Ideal for pleasure horses up to elite equine athletes
๐Ÿ”นCEN XtraBalance is a high quality digestive aid that strengthens gut health and removes toxins, promoting a stronger immune system. Also contains organic humates which enhance nutrient absorption, allowing the digestive system to maximise each feed especially key minerals such as copper and zinc for skin/coat health.

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